These are our 5 Tips on how to have a successful multi day/week long swim meet.
So you have made it all the way to Nationals! A big moment for any swimmer! It is like the crescendo of all the hours, sore muscles, early starts and sacrifices that every swimmer makes.
With all the excitement and built up pressure/ the travel to get there, here are a few tips to have a successful week of swimming from an ex swimmer who went multiple nationals and states in her day!
- Be proud of what you have achieved before even racing.
Regardless of whether you have one swim or a whole program of events, the best thing to remember is that no matter how you swim, good or bad, it is an accomplishment to even qualify. You have made it to an event with some of the fastest in the WHOLE of Australia! That means you are one of the fastest in Australia too!
It can be super nerve racking seeing unfamiliar faces in marshaling and getting into warm up or cool down on day one. I still remember feeling like I was diving into a war zone. Not to mention having passes and checkpoints to get onto the pool deck.
Best advice I can give is give yourself plenty of time to get changed, warm up, get suited up and get into marsheling.
There is nothing worse than feeling rushed on top of being nervous/excited so give yourself time to chill and get into your race zone.
Try to process each race as though it was your last. Swim it, learn from it & move on. Regardless of whether you thought the last race wasn't as good as what it should have been, there is no reason to let it affect the results of your next one. (I always liked to think of a first race as a warm up for the week of racing if i didn't do as well as what I would have loved. This gave me confidence to go into the next race without doubt.
Backing up from a morning swim to finals is mentally tough but you can make sure you prepare properly to come back fresh and ready to swim fast.
- Warm down correctly after the heats. Taking time to wind down your body is incredibly important to take any built up lactic acid out of your muscles.
- Stretch and lengthen your muscles before getting into bed for a nap or relaxing.
- Calm your mind in the break between finals (incredibly hard but it will relax you enough to let your body recover.) Listening to music/watching movie/ reading a book can help.
- Fuel your body correctly with wholesome meals that refuel and energise you.